After being waived by the Los Angeles Lakers, Luol Deng is looking to land in a new home.
Though his name was synonymous with the bloated multi-year deals that were doled out in the summer of 2016, Luol Deng was waived and stretched by the Lakers last week, and now multiple teams have interest in signing the 33-year-old wing.
One potential suitor, unsurprisingly, is his former coach and current Minnesota Timberwolves coach and executive Tom Thibodeau, as reported by Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic.
While the Lakers certainly have their fair share of intrigue surrounding them after the recent acquisition of LeBron James, Lance Stephenson, Rajon Rondo and others, Luol Deng’s immense contract was never part of their plans.
A return to the tutelage of Thibodeau makes sense for Deng, who played for Chicago and Thibodeau for 9 full seasons before being traded to the Cavaliers halfway through his 10th season with the franchise. During his time with the Bulls, Deng made two All-Star teams, the 2004-05 All-Rookie team as well as a 2011-12 All-Defensive team.
After that, Luol Deng had two successful seasons with the Miami Heat before signing the ill-fated 4-year/$72 million contract that would serve as an albatross for the Lake Show from the moment it was signed to the moment he was waived.
Perhaps Deng can recapture some of the magic of his earlier seasons with Thibs, as he was certainly a talented three-and-D wing before that phrase had passed into the lexicon of the modern NBA. ESPN’s Chris Haynes recently released a report saying multiple contenders will be interested in Deng for his veteran pedigree as well as proven production, but we will have to see if Thibodeau’s obsession with creating the Minnesota Timber-Bulls is true.
If the Wolves do indeed prioritize the signing of Luol Deng, that certainly will seem to be the case.